Apple Unveils New iPad Air With M1 Chip, Optional 5G, and Faster USB-C, Starting at $599
Apple announced a new iPad Air today at its "Peek Performance" event, featuring Apple's powerful M1 chip previously found in the iPad Pro, as well as optional 5G connectivity, a new front camera with Center Stage, and even faster USB-C connectivity.
Available in a new array of colors, iPad Air features Apple's Ultra Wide front camera with Center Stage for a more natural video conferencing experience, a USB-C port with up to 2x faster transfer speeds, and 5G on the cellular models.
In terms of the M1's pure performance, the 8-core CPU delivers up to 60% faster performance, and the 8-core GPU delivers up to 2x faster graphics performance compared to the previous iPad Air. That makes it faster than the fastest competitive tablet, and 2x as fast as the best-selling Windows laptop in its price range, according to Apple.
The USB-C port is now up to 2x faster than the previous generation, with data transfers up to 10Gbps, enabling it to support a range of USB-C accessories, including cameras, external storage, and displays with up to 6K resolution. Lastly, the new iPad Air supports the second-generation Apple Pencil.
"Whether it's a college student taking elaborate notes, a content creator working on their latest project, or a gamer playing graphics-intensive titles, users love iPad Air for its amazing performance and versatility in such a portable design," said Greg Joswiak, Apple's senior vice president of Worldwide Marketing. "With the breakthrough M1 chip, Ultra Wide front camera with Center Stage, and ultra-fast 5G, iPad Air is now more powerful, more capable, and simply more fun than ever."
The new iPad Air is priced from $599. It is available in 64GB and 256GB configurations, and comes in space gray, starlight, pink, purple, and blue colors. The new iPad Air will be available to pre-order on Friday, March 11, and will be available from March 18.